Wednesday, May 31, 2017

What the CHALK?!!

Awesome Spray Chalk vs. Good Old Fashion Fun!
Well, we checked it out and our votes here at home are 50/50.  Not like The Moms opinion matters on this one but we are the buyers of this company (CEO of our own households people!) so here's what I have to say about the Pros & Cons of each for all the CEO's out there...

Good Old Fashion Chalk
Get it at The Dollar Store, Walmart, Target, really anywhere;  affordable, fun, may break into pieces but still good enough to last an afternoon of artsy imagination to let their minds go wild!  Smaller pieces used as hopscotch rocks, crushed darker artsty areas on concrete, or what have you (your professionals know what to do!) Like crayons, they just keep collecting in a bucket and toss them when its time, but its a never ending supply because its inexpensive and fun :)

Awesome Spray Chalk
Get at Target or Amazon (I'm sure more places are picking it up but so far not easy to come by, it must be a hot trend :)!) Moms, its clean to use, (kids could care less about the cleanliness) fun & seasonal for snow or beautiful sunny days, great to mark bases for a fun game on concrete but maybe too light on grass.  Not very affordable or lasting as long;  4 cans to a container, roughly $20/ box. It was light for painting on grass (do multiple coats) or great for snow unlike regular chalk, This creative art does last a little longer on the ground despite rainy days unlike regular chalk that is washed away instantly.   As for the price and the amount of time my kids spent using it (maybe 30-40 minutes of fun) our cans quickly came to an end and we were done.  Like a spray can when you get to the bottom of it you need to keep the can vertical to spray and not able to use horizontally to chalk on the ground.

It does dry looking chalk- like which is cool. This was a great "one time buy" or excellent for a "gift" idea (yes! my kids would LOVE it!) because I do feel the Spray Chalk is a special treat to have and nice to paint a snowman in the winter, I just feel its a little pricey.  Otherwise for summer time good old fashion fun, stick with the inexpensive sidewalk chalk, it'll last a lot longer for your buck.

Either way, get down and PLAY!!!  It won't be long before that driveway is filled with cars and your kids will be driving off on their own so spend the time you can with them, get out in the sunshine and share your chalk photos on THE MOMS DIET FACEBOOK PAGE this summer & thanks for reading!

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Kim Buchanan shares her own "Moms Blend" with us!

Kim Buchanan & her own "Mornin' Blend" 
With every moms controlled chaos at home and work, I had the opportunity to watch Kim Buchanan 1st hand on how fast her morning really goes, how she juggles a million things happening at once, and how calm and cool she stayed tackling one challenge at a time that came her way.  Sure! This may have been only one morning with this fascinating lady, and maybe all went crazy the next day, or the minute after I left, but guess what? That’s a mom’s world, on and off the playing fields and that’s how most of us roll… on a good season at least!  & haha, all the above was AFTER her kids were off to school!

I am talking about, & so excited to share with you the behind the scenes experience I had on the set of “The Morning Blend” with Executive Producer, Kim Buchanan!  A show I am a huge fan of, and a family that I was able to be a part of one Sunny, Milwaukee Morning with every crew member welcoming me in and sharing their kindness and love for the part they all have in making this awesome local show what it is.  

Kim Buchanan made this day possible just by saying “yes”, when I asked if I could meet with her to learn more about her “mom and work” balance. (See on the set pics at TMB.) It was truly an honor and I hope I do justice in sharing what she shared with me (& the surprise during our interview too…wait for it…the beautiful Ms. Molly Fay dropped in!)

“You can have it all but you can’t do it all.  Find what YOU are passionate about and do it.”  -Kim Buchanan, Mom of 3 & Executive Producer of, “The Morning Blend.”

While talking to Kim, I loved most of all, how she celebrated the small tasks accomplished each day.  Getting up on time, not hitting the snooze button and kick starting her day was just one for starters.  Simple enough right?! We all feel better when we are the first one awake in our household and ready to make sure the day begins on the right track.  Kim enjoys cooking and loves to do this for her family.  With working (a few?!) long hour days at "The Morning Blend", she is unable to be home to enjoy dinner together as often as they'd like.  She takes advantage of having a warm breakfast ready for her family before the busy schedule flies each member out the door.  I thought this was crazy but at the same time, felt her smile glow when she talked about doing this.  It made her happy and she makes it happen; just another day to day goal that she accomplishes, doing what she loves most on top of so much more.  She takes her Sundays, when possible, to prepare the family meals for the week.  We’ve all heard this was the best way to avoid eating junk all week with our kids’ right?!  Kim conquers this challenge with preparation to make sure, again, her family is started off on the right step in the mornings.  Working together with her husband & prioritizing their work calendars is another way they are able to balance parenthood and be there for their children ages, 13, 11 & 9, not to mention the life of the family dog too! One biggest challenge, of a few I'm sure, that her and her husband work out is when a child is home sick, which one is able to take the day off of work to be with them.  Parenting, it never ends, and no one takes care of a sick child like their own mom or dad. Another accomplishment of parenthood & marriage with Kim and hubby, Rick.

Kim explains how important it is for every mom to find time to themselves. (I personally have to schedule this in and don’t do it enough).  Recharging the batteries to feel your best when with the family! Even if it’s a nail appointment!  I love how Kim says she loves to give a friend a little massage certificate when she sees it may be just what that friend needs for a "break".  Kim has a heart of gold putting everything she’s got into the minute she’s in and including the world around her.  I feel Kim is a huge giver always giving back as much love, if not more, than she receives! Kim did not hesitate inviting me onto the set during air time, meeting the camera crew, production manager, and even letting me know its ok, to sit comfortably in the desk behind the cameras… did I mention that desk has the same chairs our local news anchors use when LIVE?!  Her laid back and calmness was what was carried thru with everyone I met on set.  What a true honor this was and I did my best to play it as “calm” as possible like Kim does :) I lowered my excitement a gazillion notches, and took it all in embracing this special moment with her.

Kim and I continued our talk.  She was very grateful to her own mother for coming home and staying with the kids while Kim and her friends just got back from a ladies vacation away.  This was 20 years past due and “much needed” as Kim said, and who wouldn't agree?!  "Girlfriend time is always important, to have that support from one another and take the break to enjoy all you are together."  She loved having her mom home, helping take care of the family while she was away with the ladies, and  her moms extra help getting things done that had Kim herself, get caught up with a few things we all can relate to when she returned. (Take it easy ladies, her hubby works long days too & nothing like having mom home with your kids while you enjoy some girlfriend time together!  A win-win in my eyes!)

A favorite gift Kim loved from her family, besides the priceless homemade notes and cards her children make for her, were the “Wireless Beats” she’s able to listen to during her workouts; not messing with the head set cords and all while having them easily accessible in the car to listen to her favorite podcasts at times was another bonus; It may be the Mother Talkers Podcast, but that’s just my guess J

How Kim got to where she is today is not the path she set out for in the beginning.  Starting school to be a pharmacist was not sitting right in her heart but writing and journalism did and it seemed to take over when she wanted to follow in her grandmothers footsteps.  She never looked back and has been moving forward ever since.  TMJ4 had Kim as the News Producer of Special Projects for ten years.  One project was a year in the making of a local talk show.  She traveled to different areas already doing this to see how it was done, and came home with a team ready to put the talk show business model together & making it all happen right here in Milwaukee.  Her husband came up with the name of “The Morning Blend” and all was ready to go!  The show was put in place and Kim was onto the next project until she was asked to be the Executive Producer of this very show!  She was put to the challenge & took it on enjoying everyone she works with and the work she does.  “Everyone is very passionate about their work and what they contribute to the show.”  I’ve seen this first hand.  This show is more than a show, its family, and everyone’s huge heart is extremely visible.  
When I asked her if she felt she was at the peak of her career/dream, she replied,  
"I enjoy right where I'm at, & feel really great about it." 

Kim truly believes every mom makes sacrifices, "it’s great to see how other people do it and make it happen, but always do what is best for you and your family.  Let your kids know what is important to you and help them understand the “give and take” of when it’s time to work as well as taking time with your family and time away for yourself.    Don’t be afraid to be different.  Turn off work when you can, putting the phone aside, and spending quality time with your family every chance you get."

Kim Buchanan, this interview was a true pleasure and I can't thank you enough for your time together and on the set of "The Morning Blend." Thank you for sharing your work/home balance with each of us; may all the great moms out there celebrate the small victories of each day find joy in all you do, and take the time (with a delish moms-beverage) to...

"Shed the chaos, Keep the fun & remember to always have a little Moms Blend in your morning!

See more of Kim Buchanan with a special visit by Molly Fay at TheMoms YouTube Channel & hey- don't be judgie  with the "techie" part of the video either, just love the laughs and share your fun & crazy joy with us!